‘Mid­night’ con­ver­sa­tions

Los Angeles Times - - CALENDAR -

First, let me make clear that I ad­mire Oliver Stone as a bril­liant, cre­ative artist. At the same time I must re­spond to his re­cent let­ter [Cal­en­dar Letters, July 30] here where he fo­cuses on the fact that I never re­vealed to him that I had pre­vi­ously made three hash smug­gling runs from Is­tan­bul to New York. It was 1975, at the height of the War on Drugs, and my ad­mis­sion of said trips con­sti­tuted ma­jor felonies, so I was ad­vised by my lawyer that I could not speak or write about them in my book. Oliver de­liv­ered a great script, which won an Academy Award, and Alan Parker made a great film. Where I have al­ways taken is­sue with his script is a court­room speech that has me spew­ing a hate-filled di­a­tribe against Turkey and its peo­ple, when I ac­tu­ally said that all I could do was for­give them. So let us all ac­cept our share of credit or blame for a film that is still stir­ring con­ver­sa­tion 40 years later. Billy Hayes Las Ve­gas

Columbia Pic­tures

BILLY HAYES was por­trayed by Brad Davis the 1978 film “Mid­night Ex­press.” Screen­play by Oliver Stone.

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